On Saturday night I went to the second annual Control Voltage Fair at the South Street Seaport in Manhattan. It was at last year’s event where I first got the modular bug. Since that show I learned all I could about the Eurorack modular format and have purchased 31 modules and 4 racks to hold them. The modular “scene” is small and everyone I’ve met online, at Control or at these events has been friendly, helpful and really into it. It was extremely hot and humid on Saturday evening and this year the booths and live shows were outdoors. After a quick walkthrough I first stopped at the Tiptop Audio booth to play with the Trigger Riot and see the new Mix Z prototype. The TR lives up to it’s name as within a 30 seconds you can have a mass of drums making noise. The Mix Z is a mixer with a bus on it’s backside so you don’t have to patch the audio in from Tiptop drum modules. I met Richard Devine at the Make Noise booth. We discussed how he soundproofed his new studio. We also talked about how it’s important for children to hear a lot of music as they develop and how his own kid may end up a little different because of the modular sounds she’s hearing vs Row Row Row Your Boat. Ben Casey from Bangbang was there. He’s the de-facto Elektron dealer in NYC. Musician Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe and Knas the maker of the Polygamist synth were seen hanging out. Before the actual performances startetd Jeremiah Johnson had a small crowd gather around him while he improvised on the massive Control setup. They had the new Mutable Instruments modules in their giant Goikes racks and Jeremiah was making good noise with them. I talked to him after his was done about European gigs. I enjoyed Keith Fullerton Whitman’s performance. Modular sounds good live and outdoors. I like my music more structured and evil but it had moments where I wondered how he was doing it. Richard Devine’s performance had a certain sound to it. Plucky, vactrolish and for most of it happily quite dark. Due to the Tequila icey drinks they were serving right outside the festival I tired out and missed Lori Napoleon. Be sure to see my entire set of photos on flickr: click here
“People walking by outside audibly confused by the noise pouring out on to the street from RichardDevine ‘s set.” – Anthony Saunders
For more info: rivertorivernyc.com/artists/control-voltage
This entry was written by modular, synthesizer and tagged 2013, Control Voltage Fair, Eurorack, festival, modular, NYC, South Street Seaport, summer, synthesizer. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
The Village Voice voted Tobacco Road in Hell’s Kitchen (574 9th Ave, NYC) the Best Dive Bar. It’s also a “Bikini Bar”. It’s been sitting in the same location since the mid 80s. Therefore it’s quite appropriate that I do a DJ set there tomorrow night (Saturday, June 21, 2013). My college friend Bill Kraemer’s label “The Seed” recently re-released my 2007 political track Automatic. He had a contest for remixes and put the best of them out with the original. So besides my DJ set this is a proper record release party. Please come and drink heavily. It’s free to get in!
“Totally weird, awesome bar. Appropriately surreal – it’s basically right outside the bus terminal. $7 PBR + whiskey! what do you want, really? It’s a true dive.
Hot chicks serving me drinks in a bra? 4 stars! Cheap booze? 4 stars! Stage to sing Karaoke once I’m hammered? 4 stars! Dancing on a pole for free shots? Lights out.” – Yelp
This entry was written by live performance and tagged Automatic Tobacco Road, live performance, NYC, record release, The Horrorist, The Seed, Things to Come Records. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
In the video above you see the emerging dance scene in NYC. If you ever listen New Order’s Confusion and thought wow this is well produced and really works well in a nightclub now you can know the reason. Producer Arthur Baker tells how he tested the track in club specifically to sound good there. At that time most music heard even in clubs had melody and lyrics. At 13:58 in the reporter amazingly has an epic thought and asks Baker if he thinks if eventually dance music will just be rhythmic without vocals or melody. He knew the future!
“The other question is what would be the next? Because things are becoming more and more rhythmic. Do you think we will end up with just complete rhythm records with no melody whatsoever?”
For more info: wikipedia.org/wiki/Confusion_(New_Order_song)
This entry was written by live performance, music, political and tagged 1984, Arthur Baker, breakdancing, New Order, New York City, Nightclub, NYC, The Roxy. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
I love tech meetups. I always pick up a few tips and tricks and it’s nice to meet people in person. Tekserve is one of my favorite stores in Manhattan and in March Ableton and Shocklee are gathering there to show us Live 9 and Push. Ableton’s Huston Singletary, Adriano Clemente, Heinrich Zwahlen and Brian Jackson will be presenting. It’s good if you RSVP in advance. See you there!
“We’re proud to present a very special evening on Tuesday March 5, 2013 – New York City’s first look at the new and much anticipated Live 9 & Push Instrument! You’re invited to join us for a big celebration featuring presentations by Ableton Certified Trainers and hosted by Hank Shocklee & Ableton’s Huston Singletary.” – shocklee.com
For more info: shocklee.com/nyc-live-9-push-preview-event
This entry was written by Ableton Live and tagged ableton, Ableton Push, Adriano Clemente, Brian Jackson, Event, Heinrich Zwahlen, Huston Singletary, Live 9, NYC, Tekserve. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
Another absolutely legendary store is closing down in NYC. I’ve been to Bleeker Bobs countless times. A good chunk of my record collection comes from Bobs. I supposed it’s inevitable but the news saddens me. After my parents divorce my mother had a new boyfriend (now her husband Doug). To get my brother and I out of their hair on the weekends they would give us $100 to go record shopping. There were about 10 stores on our village walk including St. Marks Sounds, Vinylmania, Discorama, Rebel Rebel, Tower, Second Coming and Bleeker Bobs. As the 80s ended and I went to college, EBM/Industrial records started to dry up and I started making my own music. These factors ended my vinyl shopping spree. I think fondly of spending time with my brother and finding the music gems which I still cherish today. Be sure to read the article in The Stool Pigeon (link) for Bob’s history.
“Landmark Greenwich Village record shop Bleecker Bob’s is closing down after more than 40 years in business, and the only person in new york who doesn’t know is Bleecker Bob… A long CD rack, installed in the nineties, runs down one side of the store. It looks out of place now, like an arcade game in a library. Art deco clocks hang at the top of the walls in rows. Many of them have stopped. And there are crates and crates and crates of hand-labelled, meticulously catalogued records. But forget about the records for a minute….” – The Stool Pigeon
photo credits: bytegirl24, J Blough and nyperson
This entry was written by music, political and tagged Bleeker Bobs, New York City, NYC, record shop, record store. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
According to a post on boingboing London and Sydney already have public pianos on their streets. NYC is about to get there own. Chopsticks anyone? You can read the Village Voice article about the plan: click here
photo credit: Mrs Logic
This entry was written by Uncategorized and tagged New York, New York City, NYC, piano. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
I have this record on pink marbled 12″ vinyl. I remember my friend Joe Forbes bought it first and it took me a while to find my own copy. Eventually I found it at Rebel Rebel on Bleeker Street. Amazingly Rebel Rebel still exists and the owner still stands in behind the front counter exactly as he did 20+ years ago. Recently I went in there with my brother and saw him only now with gray hair. We spent countless weekends, hours and money buying hundreds of records from Rebel Rebel. Secession had a few good songs. I love the melancholy melodies in Touch. Melodies like this were in so much of 80s New Wave and for me the memories are melancholy too. Forget Virgin Galatic I want a proper time machine.
“Rebel Rebel is one of the old school NYC record shops— they’ve seemingly been around since the dawn of time. The walls are lined with posters and records from bands that haven’t seen a recording studio in years. Vinyl is everywhere, promo posters are sold out of a box for $2 a piece. It’s one of those places where a record buyer just feels at home.” – nycgoth.com
Bring back any memories?
This entry was written by live performance, music, video and tagged 1985, 80s, Bleeker Street, live performance, Manhattan, NYC, Rebel Rebel, records, Secession, Vinyl. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
Here’s two videos that bring you back into the techno 90s. Above we have a pretty cool remake of Joey Beltram’s classic track Energy Flash (iTunes link) from Vinyl Life. Next we have some video from one of Peter Gatien’s clubs The Tunnel. I first went to the Tunnel around 1986 (I was 16). The dancing around 1:00 in will get you laughing.
I have a lot of stories from The Tunnel none of which I’m going to commit to “print”. Do you have any you care to share?
This entry was written by music and tagged flashback, Joey Beltram, New York, NYC, techno, The Tunnel, Vinyl Life. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
A recording I made on the 6 Train going uptown in New York City. As you can hear the train sits there more than a minute before it heads from 23rd Street onward. I used an iPhone 3G and the FiRe application which uploads directly to SoundCloud.
Check out my growing set of Field Recordings: click here
This entry was written by sounds and tagged field recording, FiRe, New York City, NYC, SoundCloud, train. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.
I had to go to the Social Security office in downtown Brooklyn. I took the 4 Train back into NYC. I feel at home when I hear, “Stand clear of the closing doors please.”.
Julie and I needed to waste some time before we met friends for Julie’s birthday so we stopped by Guitar Center to visit my friend Dan who works there. You can hear some Reggae in the background. I think all music stores around the world sound incredible similar.
My friend Leslie (on the right) needed to get a new piercing so we stopped by one of New York’s famous Tattoo parlors Adorned. I like the song that’s playing. Does anyone know what it is? Buzz buzz!
Time for the celebration so we head to Supper. It’s a great Italian restaurant owned by Frank Prisinzano who became well known in NYC with one of his other spots simply called “Franks”. The food was great but as you can hear it was well loud. My poor musicians ears would have preferred a much quieter place but this is Manhattan on a Friday night.
All the recordings were done on my iPhone using the Griffin iTalk application. You can download and use these recordings for whatever you like. Here’s a download link for the 16bit aiff files. Included is a bonus audio file recorded on the F-train:
Related post: Free audio recordings from the Berlin S-Bahn.
This entry was written by iPhone, sounds and tagged Adorned, Griffin, iPhone, iTalk, New York, NYC, sounds, Supper. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.